A Change of heart (改心, Kaishin)? is a term and an important plot mechanic in Persona 5 and all of its spinoffs.

Appearance[edit | edit source]

Details[edit | edit source]

A Change of Heart can be explained as a sudden change of behavior on a specific person whose desires had been stolen via the Metaverse or Collective Unconscious' machinations. Victims of a change of heart will become better people, and, usually, they will be burdened by their crimes, and will confess all of their sins to the public. However, it can be used for a variety of more malicious effects, such as apathy, suicide, or to manipulate them into obsession with a particular someone. This is technically against the law for assault, although it is incredibly difficult to trace or catch its culprits without anyone with former experience dealing with the Metaverse. Therefore, Persona users such as the Phantom Thieves of Hearts are mandatory for police to track down as culprits.

Persona 5 / Royal[edit | edit source]

Change of Hearts are instigated by the Phantom Thieves of Hearts against rulers of Palaces, untangling their corruption and reforming them. Against minor targets or any target without a personalized Palace, defeating them in the Metaverse and taking their minor Treasure is enough to convince them to return to their real selves. Many also do apologize for their actions and/or genuinely atone and become better people.

However, against major targets with a Palace, their treasure must be stolen. If this happens, the Palace will crumble. This will always involve defeating the target, since they will protect the treasure at all costs. During another day after their Treasure was stolen, the target will confess their crimes to the world, usually on public television. As a result, targets of the Phantom Thieves do not provide any information to the police, making tracking crimes related to such incidents incredibly difficult. A change of heart can also only be performed if the Treasure has exited its Palace of origin. Therefore, if the Palace owner attempts to stop the Phantom Thieves from escaping at all costs, additional confrontations must be made until the target surrenders.

Although the effects of changing their hearts is supposed to make them better people, in reality, more often than not they are converted into apathetic, weeping husks who abandoned the ability to think for themselves. Converting the targets into weeping husks is fundamental for Yaldabaoth's plan for control, and he deliberately sets up the targets that the Phantom Thieves remove so they can all be contained in the Prison of Regression, which is the reason for the apathy of these major targets. Once Yaldabaoth's trickery and deceit is exposed, the Prison of Regression will cease to exist, allowing future targets, such as Takuto Maruki, to genuinely become better people after their treasure is stolen. Although killed months before, it might also be possible for Kunikazu Okumura to revert back to his state before he was taken over by greed, and become a genuinely good parent towards his daughter Haru.

It was later revealed in Royal that Takuto Maruki has a Persona who lets him change hearts without stealing someone's Treasure, albeit only subconsciously at first. He awakened to this power when his fiance Rumi fell into catatonic depression and had a post-traumatic stress episode at the mere mention of Maruki's name. Desperate to help her, Maruki changed her heart by purging her of her trauma, in exchange for the loss of all of her memories with Maruki. Later on, he managed to subconsciously use the same power on Sumire Yoshizawa to relieve her of her trauma by making her believe that she was her deceased sister Kasumi, albeit only subconsciously (Implying that Sumire reminded him of Rumi's unfortunate circumstances.) After he gains control of Mementos following Yaldabaoth's defeat, Maruki's power turns into altering reality entirely, with the goal of erasing all pain from existence.

Persona Q2: New Cinema Labyrinth While not explicitly mentioned by name in-game, Doe's true purpose is to allow Persona users from three generations across to break Hikari free from her borderline suicidal depression and self-loathing due to a lifetime of bullying and emotional abuse. This involves changing the endings of the four movies Doe broadcasts in the Cinema to a positive moral code that encourages her to live on. Once the final movie has been changed by defeating Doe himself, he reveals himself to be a Cognition of her father and she confesses like any other targets the Phantom Thieves are changed and was completely snapped out from her catatonic depression.

Persona 5 Scramble: The Phantom Strikers[edit | edit source]

Via Jails, the Change of Hearts are instead abused by their rulers, the Kings. The EMMA application is used by the Kings to bait other people into accidentally intruding their Jail and have their desires stolen. As they will most definitely not have the ability to defend themselves in the Metaverse, they will be attacked by the Shadows inside, before they extract a diamond-like item from them. While the victims are not physically harmed, they will experience a Change of Heart and return to the real world mesmerized by the King, causing obsessive or violent behavior among them that might result in property loss or even violent incidents. Furthermore, any opposition to the King, real or perceived, can get their hearts changed with no physical use of the EMMA app. Unlike the Phantom Thieves' Change of Hearts, this is summed up as nothing short of brainwashing, so they must go into the Jails in order to confront the King and induce a proper Change of Heart on them.

However, since Jails do not have a treasure, other methods must be used to take the desires back to their rightful owners. Most Kings are actually trapped inside a bird cage or a personification of their personal traumas or other disdain, preventing them from escaping and moving away from their past, and forces them to act with a "pay evil unto evil" mindset in mind. This Bird Cage must be infiltrated and its resident Lock Keeper must be destroyed.

After the Lock Keeper Shadow is removed and the King is sent a Calling Card in the real world, their Shadow will be summoned into the Jail. Unlike Palace owners, simply defeating them and convincing them to take off their crown will promptly release all desires kept hostage and change the King's heart. Should the King ever die, all of the Change of Heart victims remain brainwashed and the Lock Keeper will take their place instead. This happens because the Kings were not actually running the Jails, but EMMA herself. The Kings confess on the next day, but since there is no Prison of Regression or anything similar, all of the Kings revert to their usual selves prior to using the EMMA application for Salvation, and are capable of providing information of the ones responsible for their change to the Police.

While EMMA is already programmed to change hearts to grant humanity's desires, it was only able to use this function after Akira Konoe and Shuzo Ubukata modified it with the ability of cognitive psience, allowing it to generate Jails autonomously and control the King's mentality to match Konoe's mindset, resulting in the Kings behaving exactly like whomever traumatized or wronged them as long as they are in charge of the Jails. Konoe seeks to use this behavior to wipe out all crime from earth, with a severe disregard of free will.

However, usage of the Jail function by Kings to change the public's hearts appears to be separate from the game's final act, where EMMA itself becomes a crazed monstrosity and brainwashes masses of people into giving up their desires. Instead, daily interaction with the application triggers this behavior from EMMA. This stems from Kuon Ichinose refusing to program EMMA with a proper emotional and understanding algorithm, resulting in EMMA not being able to collect any desires save for people asking her for advice. Therefore, when she awakens to grant the public's wishes, she was led to believe that the public wished to have it think for them, resulting in the events of the final act.

Despite this incident shaking all of Japan within a few months, its true instigator, Kuon Ichinose, did not commit any crimes other than abusing the supernatural. Therefore, she was set free and the Phantom Thieves were proven innocent alongside her, with only Konoe arrested for murder and bribery charges.


Characters
Playable Protagonist - Morgana - Ryuji Sakamoto - Ann Takamaki - Yusuke Kitagawa - Makoto Niijima - Futaba Sakura - Haru Okumura - Goro Akechi - Sumire Yoshizawa
Confidant Igor - Sojiro Sakura - Chihaya Mifune - Munehisa Iwai - Tae Takemi - Sadayo Kawakami - Ichiko Ohya - Shinya Oda - Hifumi Togo - Yuuki Mishima - Toranosuke Yoshida - Caroline and Justine - Sae Niijima - Takuto Maruki
Major Targets Suguru Kamoshida - Ichiryusai Madarame - Junya Kaneshiro - Shadow Futaba - Kunikazu Okumura - Masayoshi Shido - Holy Grail / Yaldabaoth - Azathoth / Adam Kadmon
Other Principal Kobayakawa - SIU Director - Shiho Suzui - Natsuhiko Nakanohara - Mika - Medjed - Wakaba Isshiki - Lala Escargot - Angel and Julian - Sugimura - President Tanaka - Kazuya Makigami - Naoya Makigami - Shadow Mishima - Shinichi Yoshizawa - Rumi - Shibusawa - Jose - Kasumi Yoshizawa - Coach Hiraguchi
Locations
Tokyo Yongen-Jaya (Café Leblanc) - Shibuya - Aoyama-Itchome (Shujin Academy) - Shinjuku - Akihabara - Kichijoji - Ogikubo - Inokashira Park - Tsukishima - Akasaka Mitsuke - Suidobashi - Odaiba Seaside Park - Ichigaya - Ikebukuro - Ginza - Harajuku - Meiji Shrine - Jinbocho - Miura Beach - Maihama (Tokyo Destinyland) - Kanda - Roppongi - Ueno - Asakusa - Chinatown - Nagatacho - Shinagawa - Nakano - Kosei High School
Palace Kamoshida's Palace - Madarame's Palace - Kaneshiro's Palace - Futaba's Palace - Okumura's Palace - Niijima's Palace - Shido's Palace - Mementos (Path of Qimranut - Path of Aiyatsbus - Path of Chemdah - Path of Kaitul - Path of Akzeriyyuth - Path of Adyeshach - Path of Sheriruth - Depths of Mementos - Qliphoth World - Path of Da'at) - Maruki's Palace
Other Velvet Room - Hawaii - Thieves Den
Music
Albums Original Soundtrack (Persona 5 / Royal)
Songs "Wake Up, Get Up, Get Out There" - "Life Will Change" - "Beneath the Mask" - "Last Surprise" - "Rivers in the Desert" - "The Whims of Fate" - "Tokyo Daylight" - "Hoshi To Bokura To" - "Break In To Break Out" - "Infinity" - "Dark Sun..." - "Autonomy" - "Found a Light" - "IT'S TOO LATE" - "Colors Flying High" - "Take Over" - "He's a Trickster☆" - "I Believe" - "No More What Ifs" - "Throw Away Your Mask" - "Our Light"
Archives
Story Persona - Persona user - Shadow - Shadow Self - Second Awakening - Cognition - P. A. D. - Metaverse - Metaverse Navigator - Mask - Wild Card - Phantom Thieves of Hearts - Phantom Aficionado Website - Antisocial Force - Treasure - Police - Calling Card - Change of Heart - Psychotic breakdown - Mental shutdown - General Public - Seven Deadly Sins
School Life Daily Life - Activities - Calendar - Weather Forecast - Confidant - Social Stats - Yen - Hideout - Class - Bathhouse - Studying - Diner - Maid Café - Billiards - Books - DVDs - Retro Games - Movie theater - Batting Cage - Fishing Pond - Crossword Puzzle - Darts - Infiltration Tools - Cooking - Training - Old Temple - Part Time Jobs - Shrine - Confessional - Jazz Jin - Houseplant - TV Quiz Show - Blackboard - Vegetariano - Lottery
Vendors Shops - Vending Machines - Takemi Medical Clinic - Untouchable - Jose's Shop - Home Shopping Program - Tanaka's Shady Commodities
Phantom Life Mementos Requests - Third Eye - Security Level - Treasure Demon - Safe Room - Thieves Guild - List of Shadows - List of Bosses - Skill Card - Will Seeds - Deviations
Battle Items: (Persona 5/Royal) - Skills: (Persona 5/Royal) - Party - Battle Stats - Damage - Experience - Level - Difficulty - Status Changes - Element - Traits - Navigator - Tactics - Guard - Follow Up - Harisen Recovery - Endure - Protect - Baton Pass - Pickpocket - Party Switch - One More - Critical - Technical - Showtime - Cut-in - All-Out Attack - Hold Up - Personality - Game Over - Disaster Shadow
Velvet Room List of Personas (Persona 5/Royal) - Fusion - Special Fusion - Hanging - Lockdown - Electric Chair - Arcana - Skill Inheritance - Fusion Accident - Fusion alarm - Challenge Battle
System Trophies: (Persona 5/Royal) - Cutscenes - New Game Plus - Patches and Updates
Development
Corporate Atlus Co., Ltd.
Personnel Katsura Hashino - Shigenori Soejima - Shoji Meguro - Lyn Inaizumi - Atsushi Kitajoh - Ryota Kozuka - Kenichi Tsuchiya - Toshiki Konishi - Kazuhisa Wada - Lotus Juice
Other Media
Games Royal - Dancing in Starlight - Scramble
Productions Persona 5 The Animation The Day Breakers - Persona 5 The Animation (Episodes) - Persona O.A. - Persona 5 The Night Breakers - Persora -The Golden Best 5- - Persona 20th Anniversary All Time Best Album - Persona 5 The Stage
Publications Manga - Mementos Mission - Dengeki Comic Anthology - Comic Anthology (DNA Media Comics) - Persona Magazine
Events Super Live 2015 - Super Live 2017 - Super Live 2019
Miscellaneous Merchandise
Characters
Playable Protagonist - Morgana - Ryuji Sakamoto - Ann Takamaki - Yusuke Kitagawa - Makoto Niijima - Futaba Sakura - Haru Okumura - Sophia - Zenkichi Hasegawa
Major Targets Alice Hiiragi - Ango Natsume - Mariko Hyodo - Akane Hasegawa - Akira Konoe - Kuon Ichinose - EMMA / False God Demiurge
Other Lavenza - Sojiro Sakura - Miyako Kaburagi - Shuzo Ubukata‎‎ - Jun Owada - Aoi Hasegawa - Sae Niijima - My Dear Joker
Locations
Japan Yongen-Jaya (Café Leblanc) - Shibuya - Sendai - Sapporo - Okinawa - Fukuoka - Kyoto - Osaka - Yokohama - Tokyo Tower
Jail Shibuya's Jail - Sendai's Jail - Sapporo's Jail - Okinawa's Jail - Kyoto's Jail - Osaka's Jail - Jail of the Abyss - Tree of Life and Wisdom
Other Velvet Room
Music
Songs "You Are Stronger" - "Daredevil" - "What You Wish For" - "Axe to Grind" - "Counter Strike" - "Beneath the Mask" - "Last Surprise" - "Rivers in the Desert" - "To Wish"
Archives & Terminology
Story Persona - Persona User - Shadow - Shadow Self - Metaverse - Metaverse Navigator - Cognition - P. A. D. - Mask - Phantom Thieves of Hearts - Madicce - Antisocial Force - Treasure - Police - Calling Card - Change of Heart - Zephyrman
Gameplay Arcana - Third Eye - All-Out Attack - Cut-in - Baton Pass - Showtime - Fusion - BAND - Master Arts - Requests - Lock Keeper - Joker's Kitchen
Vendors Sophia's Shop
System Patches and Updates - Cutscenes
Development
Corporate Atlus Co., Ltd. - Koei Tecmo Games Co., Ltd. - Omega Force
Personnel Daisuke Kaneda - Shigenori Soejima - Atsushi Kitajoh - Lyn Inaizumi - Lotus Juice
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